The Maharashtra government has given nod for implementing the ‘Restructured Weather Based Horticulture Insurance Scheme’ (RWBHIS) between 2020-21 and 2022-23. State Agriculture Minister Dadasaheb Bhuse said farmers can now register online for the voluntary crop insurance scheme, which is open for both farmers with existing crop loans or those willing to take new ones.
The scheme provides financial support and security to farmers in the likelihood of financial loss to farm produce caused by natural calamities, including hailstorm and unseasonable rain. Under it, a farmer has to pay only five per cent of the total insurance premium, while the remaining amount is paid by the Centre and state.
Agriculture secretary, Eknath Davale, said, ‘In Ahmednagar, Amravati, Sindhudurg, Nashik, Washim, Yavatmal, Satara, Parbhani, Jalna, Latur and Kolhapur districts, the HDFC Ergo General Insurance Company has been shortlisted to provide insurance to farmers. Whereas, Bajaj Allianz General Insurance Company has been selected for Raigad, Buldhana, Jalgaon, Nanded, Pune and Osmanabad districts. The Bharatiya Krishi Bima Company will cater to the districts of Dhule, Palghar, Solapur, Ratnagiri, Nagpur, Nandurbar.’
The process of shortlisting the insurance company for Beed, Aurangabad, Akola, Sangli, Wardha, Thane and Hingoli districts, is underway, he added.
The agriculture department, Bhuse said, has permitted the cultivation of oranges, sweet lime, pomegranate, guava, lemon and chikku in 18 districts during ‘mrug bahar’ cycle (bearing fruits from February onwards) and cultivation of grapes, bananas, mango, cashew, orange, sweet line, pomegranate have been allowed in 23 districts for ‘ambia bahar’ cycle (fruition from September-October). Strawberry cultivation will be based on specified tried-and-tested locations in selected districts.
The last date to apply for the insurance scheme for ‘mrug bahar’ sweet lime and chikku is June 30, orange cultivation June 20, guava June 14, and pomegranate July 14. Under ‘ambia bahar’ cycle, the last date for filing the application for grape is October 15, sweet lime and banana October 31, orange, cashew and mango November 30. For pomegranate, it is December 31 and strawberry October 14.
The department has urged the farmers not to rush on the last date and instead start applying online seeking the help of local agriculture centres.
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